Stressed out? 😖 Try these 4 habits
SPOILERS: ✍️ 🌬 🧘♀️ 💆♂️
A study of 46 students in Harvard Health found that journalling about traumatic life events leads to fewer healthcare visits and less painkiller usage. Try the RULER method - Recognise, Understand, Label, Express and Regulate emotions - 'I am angry because...'
🌬 Diaphragmatic (or deep) breathing
A study of 40 people in Frontiers found that deep breathing improves sustained attention, affect and salivary cortisol (stress hormone levels). Try getting your in and out breaths up to 5.5 seconds, Box breathing (4-4-4-4) or the Wim Hof method (30-hold out-hold in).
🧘♀️ Meditation & mindfulness
Research in Elsevier's Current Opinions in Psychology now links meditation to improved ageing of DNA as well as improvements in stress and mental health. Try focusing on your breath, finding a YouTube video to follow or the Headspace and Calm apps.
A study of 60 healthy females in Nature Research found that a simple head and neck massage significantly increases heart rate variability, a physiological marker of reduced stress. Try a head and neck at home or a massage machine.